「恋愛初心者」 (Renai Shoshinsha)
“Beginners at Love”

It was hard for me to keep my emotions in control while watching this episode. Sukitte Ii na yo. is truly a fantastic anime. Its tenderness, poignancy, and warmth are just a few of the things that grab my heart and keep me attached to this show. While all love stories are emotional, this one truly stands out in the realm of shoujo. There is maturity, realism, and logic in this anime. People can relate to the situations and feel what the characters are going through. It has been a long time since a shoujo show had me on the brink of tears.

Frankly, Yamato hasn’t been very deserving of Mei’s love lately. He has been ignorant and oblivious to her true feelings. It upsets me that he who claims that he loves Mei, needed a wake-up-call from Aiko to actually realize that he has been hurting his girlfriend. Most of my accusations in this arc were directed towards Megumi, but now, Yamato has truly done it. Megumi was the catalyst for this issue of trust to appear between Mei and Yamato, but in the end, this would’ve been such an insignificant matter if the couple would’ve been stronger. Perhaps it’s unfair of me to demand that Yamato pays more attention to Mei. Maybe the same should be requested from Mei as well, but judging these two people based on their backgrounds, Mei has every right to feel the way she does. Yamato must have understanding for that. When Mei noticed that Yamato was watching her, she felt uneasy because of all the negativity inside her. Her being blunt might’ve been startling but Yamato walking away from her truly surprised me. He knows Mei is different, that was one of the reasons why he found her interesting. He should know how difficult it is for Mei to be social. While Yamato’s social life might’ve been the reason why he has grown to be such an oblivious person, he should’ve learned by now. Perhaps this is why he couldn’t help his bullied childhood friend, or his sister? Perhaps he slowly began to take people for granted because everyone around him did that to him? If so, then that is truly sad.

Don’t take me wrong though. My words may sound harsh, but my view on Yamato as a character is not bad. He is a decent character, but as Mei’s boyfriend, he hasn’t been very respectable. That doesn’t necessarily mean that he is going remain the way he is. Hopefully he has realized what it means to truly love someone now so he can redeem himself. The final scene in this episode was so touching. While this was vastly different from how things went in the manga, which to me was quite disappointing but easy to forgive, the anime made more of an impact on me. Both these characters are so emotionally unstable and new at true love. Both of them find it hard to express their genuine selves in front of each other. It was hard for me to hold my tears back when the episode ended. While the scene was very different from my expectations (which were based on the manga), it was truly a pleasing and beautiful scene.

This realization both characters faced is a huge step for them, but the hardships won’t end. Megumi will probably not give up, so perhaps now is a better time to start accusing her for being a selfish nightmare. The love rivalry is on, and the love triangle is very likely to become a love quadrangle now that my second favourite character, Takemura Kai (Maeno Tomoaki), has been properly introduced. He has already introduced himself to Mei, plus he is enrolling in her high school. The development from this stage will be very interesting to watch. A male rival might be a bit of a cliché, but a very necessary one in this case, because this might make Yamato realize how important Mei is. While he does care for her, he needs to have a clear look at her importance in his life. A broken bracelet can be fixed, but to do so, one must be very careful and have patience.

Full-length shots: 1, 8, 20, 21, 26

Eyecatch: B-part




  1. after mei did tie-pull kiss yamato goes what so mei yamato have some alone time in park give mei still bitt on worried mood til mention megumi’s magazine interview whole yamato with megumi.

    cue mei on bordering might crash & burn at anytime that aiko call out yamato the “what were doing/thinking” speech that mei feel hurt whole yamato hanging with megumi.

    so mei at bread area then meet person who want mei’s key but no yet mention will go mei’s school & with name is kai.

    after bread work mei walking the bracelet break then yamato found & very sorry for mei for all on it.

  2. I’m giving Yamato a break on this one. When Aiko pointed out what he had done, he didn’t deny it or go to ask Mei if it was true, he frantically tried to reach her to apologize. He appeared heartbroken at what he had done. Thinking about it, the broken bracelet was a good metaphor for her broken heart as was the two of them trying to pick up the pieces of their relationship.

    The walking away, although it shocked me, can be explained by the fact that earlier she had publicly and rather passionately kissed him. When he tries to continue their physical contact she calls his actions creepy. Something of a verbal slap in the face.

    Also Yamato’s ego was really stroked by being asked to model and Mei had given him permission. While he may know Mei is different, he is a straightforward person who assumes you really mean what you say. Mei had been honest with him in the past why would he think differently now? You may be inclined not to question it when you get the answer you’re hoping for too.

  3. well…..I hate this anime. I stuck with it this long because I just wanted to see more epically-amazing moments like the kiss in ep 1, there have been no more like it since, so here I go.

    This is possibly the most unrealistic anime that didn’t have aliens, giant robots, or magic. ” oh-so popular boy chooses the oh-so unpopular girl” is nothing new in shoujo anime/manga, but Mei? He choose Mai?! She is moody, violent, fickle, and all around depressing to be around. She says she doesn’t want friends, hey, no problem! Who would want to be around her at all. Its not like Yamato is such a “prince” himself anyway.

    planet Earth calling
    1. Before saying this possibly the most unrealistic anime that didn’t have aliens, giant robots, or magic – go watch Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun. You just might think both of the main characters are aliens though.

      1. Hey though, at least its funny and it follows the manga almost word for word. The manga for Suktte was funny too and the characters were a bit likeable, this anime is a debauchery. They cut it up sooo much!!!

      2. They’re not just cutting it up, they’re dumbing down characters & killing impactful scenes. It just doesn’t do the manga any justice at all. But that is only our perspective.

        I really have no problem with it, because it’s still the same mess. They might be getting somewhat of a boner by changing some things but usually when they do these types of things, its how the author/mangaka originally wanted to do it. They’re usually under a lot of stress due to deadlines & sleepless nights, so they’re work shows it. However it’s usually a good thing because they transfer much of that stressful feeling over to the piece. But those people ALWAYS think they can improve stuff, especially when it gets to TV. It takes a strong heart (or a dead mangaka – no I’m not joking) to leave it as it is.

  4. First off, I need to make a shout out to Aiko in this episode. I was SO happy that she finally called out Yamato and opened his eyes to the situation. It was getting painful to watch Mei keep all her feelings inside while Yamato walked around with blinders on. I’m really loving Aiko’s character development with every new episode. Not only was she there for Mei but for Asami as well. She is definitely the key to holding that group together.

    As for our main couple, this episode definitely had me on the edge of my emotional seat. It demonstrated how a lack of communication (verbal and nonverbal) can snowball into much bigger problems. While Mei didn’t know how to voice her real opinion, Yamato didn’t know how to pick up on her emotional cues. There was some obvious body language on Mei that he was completely missing. So again, thank you Aiko for leading our couple in the right direction. It’s clear that Yamato loves Mei very much. His race to find her and apologize was evidence of that. And it’s very clear that Mei loves Yamato in return just based on all the growth she has shown. It really struck me when Mei said she’d felt nothing but pain ever since she started really liking Yamato. It’s a hard lesson to learn that love can be painful. But lessons like those are necessary for serious relationships. So now as they “pick up the pieces” together, hopefully they can move forward and learn from their mistakes.

  5. …& now we have a true dating sim. Now all that is needed is for Megumi to go into pure bitch mode & Kai to do whatever the hell he does. These 3rd parties are just too much. They’re polar opposites & they do nothing but ruin the show – the the 1st 5 episodes were so darn good too. This episode was OK but it was just too much melodrama. It just seemed so bloody fake & forced.

    I might be a little hard on this show now but that’s because I’m just overly comparing to the prior 5 eps. Maybe I just hate forced-fed drama.

    But seriously, I can go on & try to re-invent the wheel with this show but it is what it is – a show about teenagers’ awkwardness & mistakes. You can include love in there if you want.

    The only irony in this is that Mei may feel hurt & jealous w/o Yamato not noticing but…

    Show Spoiler ▼

    So I’ll just break the bread there & give Yamato all the breaks he needs, since I’m doing the same for Mei.

  6. I always have to watch this show before I do sword art online every sundays because of the way this show affects me. I believe the genius of this show is that it is truly relatable. The title of the episode New at Love brings me back to my own personal experiences of being in love for the first time back in highschool. Most of us who keeps up with this show knows exactly how that feels. It brings up our own mistakes due to ignorance or carelessness and sadly it ended some of those relationships even if you knew there was potential in it. The whole idea of being in love with the right person at the wrong time also comes up in the sense of lack of experiences. Most of us have also been victims of thoughtless acts before and that’s why its so heartbreaking to see Mei like this. Damn I feel like I spilled so much but I guess that’s what a good show does to you. I’m soo glad that this show exists.

  7. I’m not Yamato’s biggest fan but gotta give it to him this episode – he really tried. The one that frustrated me more was Mei. I struggle with her not voicing her opinion, and even though there was some progress, there is still a long way for her to go.

    I’m curious about the new guy. I’m ready for him to shake things up! I hope he actually has a fair chance though. But I think it’s pretty obvious who she’s going to pick.

    (And no I haven’t read the manga).

    1. i agree, this was more of Mei’s fault than Yamato’s, his being unable to understand her feelings is pretty understandable, from his point of view, he already asked about how Mei would feel about him modeling and she was fine with it, so no reason for him to think it’s affecting her now.And him walking away wasn’t actually very surprising, between being kissed publicly and being told off Yamato probably felt like being toyed with or taken for granted which likely hurt his feelings to the point he could only walk away.

    1. not sure whether it’s spoiler since the scene is already out, but keeping it under anyway.

      Show Spoiler ▼

      you really need to read that chapter (ch14), to get the full impact of how Mei is feeling. my heart wrench every time i read the chapter. all i can say is, thank goodness Yamato responds fast after being told off. nothing is worse than a male protagonist who ignores the problem and leaves things as it is.

      1. My memory might be a little rusty of the manga and I haven’t watched this episode yet:

        Show Spoiler ▼

        Not sure if the above will be showed in the next episode or not, but I suppose I should watch the latest now …

  8. would’ve preferred if they had followed the manga for this episode. i’m not trying to nitpick and say that manga’s the best, but i felt the impact more in the manga.
    for Mei to still be able to go for her part-time job after hearing all that, and for Yamato to be running around town without thinking of checking out her part-time job place during his search doesn’t seem reasonable too. technically, there’s only a couple of places Mei can go. Yamato might not be the best boyfriend, but he’s not that unobservant about Mei.

    1. I don’t understand why they did it like that either. But they changed a lot of stuff.

      Kanae knew she was a bit over-the-top when Mei told Yamato that the look his face made her sick – that made NO SENSE. If she had the gumption to say that, she should have just told him that she didn’t want him modeling or screwing around with Megumi outright – the impact of him walking away from her on the street just wasn’t there with the park bench. But I still wanted to go upside her head for that so I guess it’s OK.

      Also in this episode, by the time Aiko straightens up Yamato, Mei screws up her schedule by going to work early so he HAS to hunt her. In the manga he goes straight to her house & she’s there. I guess it’s an extended effort thing along with them milking a bit more time.

      All in all, I don’t have much of a problem with the anime’s version as much as for the content as a whole, but that’s just me nitpicking.

  9. Megumi red flag alert! Those eyebrows are signs I tell you! This anime is fantastic so far. It’s so realistic and I can really relate to the Mei very well. When people are not being honest and hide feelings it can really lead to misunderstandings, leading to out of control emotions and just more resentment. This couple is really new to love and I hope this situation will help their relationship grow and mature.

  10. Aiko has been the true blunt force trauma in this show so far. At first, I thought she’d be Mei’s rival, but I love how she’s being the one to (verbally) smack some sense into our awkward lovebirds here. She’s definitely earned some more “cool points” in this episode as well.

  11. The anime isnt too bad but imo it doesnt hold a candle to the manga.
    Megumi is portrayed much more evil and conniving in the manga, and Nakanishi was a dick in the first chapter or 2 in the manga, where as in the anime he bumped into her on accident instead of pushing her down on purpose in the manga.

    Mei’s personality is too meek in the anime compared to the manga, she acts pretty much the same but for some reason in the manga she seems much more strong.

    Overall the anime isnt too bad, but imo they could of portrayed it better, and just go above and beyond like how the manga feels for me.

  12. Well, that was a certainly fine episode…i’m not really that much of a habitué of anime of this genre (i dunno, for some reason, i like Hollywood romances more that anime romances), but so far this anime has been quite steady in terms of quality, and every episode packed a certain kind of an element that kept my eyes glued from start to finish…about the Yamato problem, i’m gonna be in the minority on this one. I don’t think he was at fault for Mei’s grief since it was just a force of habit for her to get to a girl’s house just to help her out with something (she knows a lot of girls, and she has done a lot of things with them, vising them is one of them), and i’m pretty sure he wouldn’t do anything carnal with her Megumi (i think he understood correctly the concept of “not cheating with your girlfriend/boyfriend)

    i know that some may argue that Yamato should adumbrate himself in Mei’s position, but i don’t think he would have been as aggravated as Mei had he done because i know he would have believed that Mei wouldn’t do anything funny (unlike Mei who was overly cautious)..

    but at least all is well for both of them eventually…

    On another note, i think the director should stop using the trick of ‘Having people talk in the background about the conflict to elevate the tension”, really, it’s getting old…

  13. Good Great episode.
    It may appear that Mei is beginning to look like a high-maintenance girl. But truth of the matter is she wants to feel
    cherished by Yamato. This is all new to both of them, so it’s understandable that Mei couldn’t explain that to Yamato
    and that he wouldn’t necessarily know how. A romance begins with friendship, trust, and mutual respect for each other.
    But a romance can only grow when it’s properly fed, and this episode showed that, IMHO. Mei needs that emotional
    knowledge of Yamato, without it, she’s feels starved; isolated, fustrated, and confused about her connection with him.

    Yamato’s, as 99.99% males in this world, connection with Mei grows through more “tactile” as illustrated by the kiss
    he received from her. There’s no reason to believe that if he had given Mei what she needed, a second kiss would have
    happened in the park.

    Guys plateau in a relationship, excuse the simile, with Mei’s kiss he believed that that mountain was conquered, and
    available from that point on when he says “I was hoping for another surprise.” Her “creepy” comment is typical of a girl
    feeling used, treated like an object, even if he didn’t meant it that way.

    If I had a 100¥ for every time I’ve seen this happen…

    But, it looks like they’ve overcome this obsticle in their relationship. I’m really like the realism in this series.

    I hope everyone was taking notes through this series, I’m sure there’ll be a test at the end 🙂 :)…

    1. //Guys plateau in a relationship, excuse the simile, with Mei’s kiss he believed that that mountain was conquered, and available from that point on when he says “I was hoping for another surprise.” Her “creepy” comment is typical of a girl feeling used, treated like an object, even if he didn’t meant it that way.//

      not likely, it’s not the first time they kissed, so no reason for Yamato to believe that that mountain was conquered rather he probably assumed it’s what she wanted after Mei aggressively kissed him and coupling that with Mei’s “creepy” comment when he tried to return her affections, Yamato was probably the one feeling used, treated like an object by Mei.

  14. They dared me, so might as well I guess.

    After all that analysis last week, and seeing that as expected nothing improved I am officially done with this show.If they wanted to tell a “realistic” high school story they failed. Maybe they should have made Hayakawa the main character cause that would certainly be interesting to watch even if the writing was as bad as this. But these are hypocritical,stupid and stereotypical characters (should also add sexist) and in 8 episodes I feel absolutely nothing towards them and their problems. They don’t talk about anything other than relationships, they have no interests, no personality that goes beyond our first impressions on them.

    But this shit is actually offensive:

    Aika’s self mutilation in order to lose weight may be extreme of course but justified(!) in her attempts to be liked by others! And Yamato was totally bad for wanting to have sex with a poor fragile and innocent creature like a 16 year old girl ,with as much if not more experience as him, who he was attracted to or kind enough to console her! Yeah cause if the situation was reversed and a 16 year old boy down on his luck had sex with the most popular girl in school, he would totally be hurt by the experience!

    Also,if you are a boy/girl in a relationship going to another boy’s/girl’s house for dinner and conversation is totally wrong! Be socially retarded,hide it or admit your mistake at least! Cause meeting new people is bad, who knows they may be plotting something sinister like making you rich and introducing you to a whole new world (fashion/modelling in this case) and that might hurt the one you are with so drop everything in order to make them happy right? Gee…they may even want to have sex with you and we definitely cannot allow that!

    Oh and let’s not forget we have another couple if you don’t like the main one. “She has big tits and I love her” x I AM CUTE RIGHT GUYS? Please.

    1. ah~~, but you seem a bit too late. I don’t know who dared you, but try trashing it again within 24 hours of the initial post. Your post may not meet immediate death like in SAO posts, but seriously after 2 days the post is up, no one really bothers to visit anymore.

    2. of course this isn’t 100% realistic, if it were, it would kind of defeat the point of having fiction as entertainment.but this is very realistic FOR A ANIME(if you didn’t get that already).

  15. Lol, I love Kai’s introduction in the series, Aiko is basically the shit for being nice to the people she cares about, looks like Megumi will show a bitch side, and the cliff hanger of this episode was once again epic.


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